International Women’s Day

Lesson plan overview

This ESL lesson plan is dedicated to 8th March – International Women’s Day. Students will read about 4 women who have contributed to the equal rights movement (Susan B. Anthony, Frida Kahlo, Simone de Beauvoir, Malala Yousafzai), will watch a video about the history of International Women’s Day and will discuss various topics related to women and gender equality. You can combine this lesson with “What is holding women back at work” and “Idioms: gender equality“.
Speaking: The lesson starts with a discussion about International Women’s Day, its message and its purpose.
Then, students talk about what they know about each of the women they are going to read about (Susan B. Anthony, Frida Kahlo, Simone de Beauvoir, Malala Yousafzai).
Reading: Students read 4 short texts about 4 women who have contributed to the equal rights movement in different ways. Then they work on vocabulary and collocations from the text (grant a right, suffrage, face opposition, ban someone from doing something, campaign for, advocate for). They complete a gap-fill activity to practise these verbs and then complete a few sentences with their own ideas.
Listening: Students watch a video “What is International Women’s Day” and match the dates to the events.
Speaking: Next, students discuss 8 questions about women’s rights and current issues related to gender equality. Lastly, students are asked to research and prepare a short presentation about a woman who inspires them.
You can use the conversation cards for additional speaking practice.

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Teacher’s lesson plan

Student’s worksheet

Student’s interactive PDF

Conversation cards PDF

Pre-class activities

To send the pre-class activities to your students, copy the link below.

Vocabulary matching


The first time you watch the video, pay special attention to the correct pronunciation of the following words:

The United Nations officially supported International Women’s Day to reflect on progress made, to call for change, and to celebrate acts of courage and determination…
Recently, the world has witnessed a significant change in society’s thoughts about women’s equality.
We do have female astronauts and prime ministers, …

Comprehension questions

In-class activities

Teacher’s lesson plan
Student’s worksheet

Conversation cards PDF

Student’s interactive PDF

Additional resources

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